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2006 XLR
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I' owned my 06 XLR for about two years now and have noticed oil leaks coming from the magnets after I reintroduces synthetic oil to the crankcase, was Dino oil before, had to use two oil filters because of the debris in the engine. So I've looked at many supply stores on the seals that hold back that oil in the crankcase, but haven't been able to find any, even after talking to many parts attendants. They've printed out blowup details proving that no gasket is designed for sealing. I've found in my DVD mechanic information that a 15/64 alignment pin is needed to properly align and feed oil to the mechanism. All they state is that "Failure to align the camshaft position actuator solenoids to the camshaft position actuator oil control valves can lead to poor engine performance and engine component concerns". What are these engine components concerns? Plugs are need after alignment, does these plus have a part number? Also it states to "Apply a 2 mm (0.079 in) bead of RTV around the flange of the camshaft position actuator
solenoid". Is this the only seal to keep that oil from dripping out? To me, it shouldn't be because the magnets will get half way fill with oil, So now I'm reaching out for some help on this LH2 Northstar engine, because I'm at wits end. Thanks in Advance.
 

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'02 ETC CE, '04 CTS-V, '04 XLR, '13 XTS Platinum
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You'll likely have better luck posting this in the Northstar engine forum where the heavy-duty gear heads can help you out. The XLR received the most reliable Northstar engine; the biggest difference is the water -cooled generator placement. (The engine needs to be lifted from the cradle to service it.)

CC
 

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2006 XLR
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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited by Moderator)
I've owned my 06 XLR for about two years now and have noticed oil leaks coming from the magnets after I reintroduces synthetic oil to the crankcase, was Dino oil before, had to use two oil filters because of the debris in the engine. So I've looked at many supply stores on the seals that hold back that oil in the crankcase, but haven't been able to find any, even after talking to many parts attendants. They've printed out blowup details proving that no gasket is designed for sealing. I've found in my DVD mechanic information that a 15/64 alignment pin is needed to properly align and feed oil to the mechanism. All they state is that "Failure to align the camshaft position actuator solenoids to the camshaft position actuator oil control valves can lead to poor engine performance and engine component concerns". What are these engine components concerns? Plugs are need after alignment, does these plus have a part number? Also it states to "Apply a 2 mm (0.079 in) bead of RTV around the flange of the camshaft position actuator solenoid". Is this the only seal to keep that oil from dripping out? To me, it shouldn't be because the magnets will get half way fill with oil, So now I'm reaching out for some help on this LH2 Northstar engine, because I'm at wits end. Thanks in Advance.
 

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2006 XLR
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks, didn't realize that this section existed, been reading up on other posters questions and replies, I like reading technical information, just like Scotty on Star Trek, lol. I hope someone will cut the chase and show me the golden answer, am looking at the plugs on E-Bay and will buy. Thanks for helping.
 

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Will this issue cause the check engine light to come on? The valve cover gasket also comes with seals for each coil pack that may or may not have been installed. Pull each coil pack to see if you have oil in the spark plug tube. A scanner could help to identify the issue How to check engine light with scanner? and you can also solve the problem following the obd2 scanner guide.
 

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2006 XLR
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I replaced the valve cover gaskets with the o-ring seals leading to the sparks plug access, even removed the magnet's housing to explore what's causing the leaks, and while I was there resealed its gasket. I tend to do overkill and really clean the channel and apply oil resistant gasket maker before installing the rubber factory gasket. The engine DTC are not calling at this time, but I filled the actuators phasers with the same RTV and added hand made gasket to resist oil seeping, it has slowed the leak but I would like it gone as any mechanic would strive to do. I'm still thinking its the alignment oil control mechanism that not aligned and am working on reading the many posts and replies here on this forum. Interesting on how these engines were designed. I have many encounters with the dealers service departments and had to call them out on the wheel alignment, and whoa they didn't like it. finally got the alignment very close to zero factory specs after the third rework or go backs and I had to be there at the alignment rack to ensure those specs were narrowed and buttoned down. Those mechanic are lazy and the specs are just a pothole from being out of spec, but I digress.
 

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2008 XLR
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32 Posts
The leak is usually the electric plug for the magnets on the camshafts. No way to seal them but replace. The metal holder for the magnets has wiggle room. Thus the need install a rod thru the magnet and into the oil control valve if misaligned you can break the actuator or wear the magnet which runs on a film of oil. Ive not seen new plugs for the center hole but new ones pop out and a touch of sealer will prevent leaks when installed. When replaceing them the three bolts that hold them should be loosened and then pry them away from the cam covers .they are stuck on very tight. Removing the bolts then prying will break the cam shaftboil control acuator. 250$ for a used one.no new available anywhere
 

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2006 XLR
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
The leak is usually the electric plug for the magnets on the camshafts. No way to seal them but replace. The metal holder for the magnets has wiggle room. Thus the need install a rod thru the magnet and into the oil control valve if misaligned you can break the actuator or wear the magnet which runs on a film of oil. Ive not seen new plugs for the center hole but new ones pop out and a touch of sealer will prevent leaks when installed. When replaceing them the three bolts that hold them should be loosened and then pry them away from the cam covers .they are stuck on very tight. Removing the bolts then prying will break the cam shaftboil control acuator. 250$ for a used one.no new available anywhere
I waited for someone on this forum to help me out but none replied but you. What I did was to replace all four camshaft position actuator solenoid magnets, aligned them and reinstalled the plugs, to this date have had no oil leaks on them magnets. The way I saw it is when those go defective the camshaft position actuator solenoid magnet tolerances go out of spec, old thick oil will cause interference in the magnetic signal to the oil control valve causing motor oil to be let into the magnet assembly solenoid, by way of that oil control valve. I looked around and found this information on a Japanese car forum that have this kind of a set up. Also I introduced 10-30 Synthetic Motor instead of using the 5-30 recommended oil cause I live in the hotter region of the states and now I getting the P0024 DTC, I have to remove the camshaft position sensors and clean the base of the thick oil that clings to it, and of course clear the DTC with my Tech 2. I am going back to the 5W-30 Mobile synthetic oil to remedy this problem. These Northstar are a handful but it is what it is. Thanks for replying Bion.
 

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2002 F55 STS, 2014 Explorer XLT, F-150
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Nice that a member with VVT experience offered some sage advice.

Your roller cammed Northstar would be happy as a tick using 5W-30 engine oil in Saudi Arabia in August. Before the 2000 switch to rollers, the old flat-tappet Northstars used 10W-30. You can run 0W-30 too. One caution is frequent oil/filter changes in a VVT engine.

I have run Pennzoil Platinum 5W-30 and WIX 51522 filters since 11/05 and my non-VVT 2002 gets over 6500 miles to the quart of oil. Because the car is now a garage queen it gets an oil/filter change each September, mileage notwithstanding.

Truly glad that my engine does not use the faulty VVT system. Too many nightmare stories in these forums - for ALL engines that use the system, whoever made them. Your problems serve to reinforce the VVT cautions.
 

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2006 XLR
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Nice that a member with VVT experience offered some sage advice.

Your roller cammed Northstar would be happy as a tick using 5W-30 engine oil in Saudi Arabia in August. Before the 2000 switch to rollers, the old flat-tappet Northstars used 10W-30. You can run 0W-30 too. One caution is frequent oil/filter changes in a VVT engine.

I have run Pennzoil Platinum 5W-30 and WIX 51522 filters since 11/05 and my non-VVT 2002 gets over 6500 miles to the quart of oil. Because the car is now a garage queen it gets an oil/filter change each September, mileage notwithstanding.

Truly glad that my engine does not use the faulty VVT system. Too many nightmare stories in these forums - for ALL engines that use the system, whoever made them. Your problems serve to reinforce the VVT cautions.
One question, why is it mandatory that the motor oil be changed once a year. I was thinking that the engine heat would cook the oil. But isn't it recommended that the trans fluid get the same change interval. Thanks for bringing more insight in the world this car has enveloped me in.
 

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2002 F55 STS, 2014 Explorer XLT, F-150
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Every time you start/run the engine it produces blowby gases and acids that condense in the engine guts. A fully warmed up engine (10 miles +) ingests air upon shutdown/cooldown, which may condense moisture on engine parts. Part of why we have a PCV system. The at least once a year oil/filter thing insures that the engine is subjected to the least amount of internal corrosion weighed against actual use. Same as changing perfectly good coolant every 4 years - cheap term insurance. Transmission fluid is not subjected to any of the contaminants as engine oils so it's essentially forever, given no mechanical contamination problems.
 

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2006 XLR
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Every time you start/run the engine it produces blowby gases and acids that condense in the engine guts. A fully warmed up engine (10 miles +) ingests air upon shutdown/cooldown, which may condense moisture on engine parts. Part of why we have a PCV system. The once a year oil/filter thing insures that the engine is subjected to the least amount of internal corrosion weighed against actual use. Same as changing perfectly good coolant every 4 years - cheap term insurance. Transmission fluid is not subjected to any of the contaminants as engine oils so it's essentially forever, given no mechanical contamination problems.
Thanks, I thought it was for another unknown reason since it was synthetic motor oil.
 

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2002 F55 STS, 2014 Explorer XLT, F-150
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If one were to install an oil centrifuge for particulates removal plus a monitoring system to replace depleted additives then you could essentially run the same engine oil fill for the life of the car. The only reasons we change oil and filters is to remove soot and microscopic particulates from the engine guts and replenish the detergents, anti-foam, anti-acid, anti-scuff, whatever additives that are depleted by heat and friction. Oil is formulated to run at 180 - 220 degrees to boil off acids and moisture as well as to maintain flow capabilities. It's the only "coolant" for the engine guts - it passes its heat off to the block surfaces which are cooled by the cooling system. Flow is lubrication and cooling; pressure is a result of bearing and internal machined tolerances. Our watchmaker tolerance engines run on "light" oils. Heavy machinery runs on stuff like 15W-40, 15W-50 or 20W-50 - different formulations and additive packages than automotive oils.

I spent a second career as master of an oceanographic research ship, powered by four 650 hp Cummins twin turbo V-12s. They each used 23 gallons of Drydene 15W-40 diesel lube. It took us almost two 55 gallon drums to do an oil and filter (3 for each engine) change every 125 hours or so. That's about the equivalent of 7500 car miles. We won't talk about the two GM 4-71 diesel gensets.
 

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2006 XLR
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
If one were to install an oil centrifuge for particulates removal plus a monitoring system to replace depleted additives then you could essentially run the same engine oil fill for the life of the car. The only reasons we change oil and filters is to remove soot and microscopic particulates from the engine guts and replenish the detergents, anti-foam, anti-acid, anti-scuff, whatever additives that are depleted by heat and friction. Oil is formulated to run at 180 - 220 degrees to boil off acids and moisture as well as to maintain flow capabilities. It's the only "coolant" for the engine guts - it passes its heat off to the block surfaces which are cooled by the cooling system. Flow is lubrication and cooling; pressure is a result of bearing and internal machined tolerances. Our watchmaker tolerance engines run on "light" oils. Heavy machinery runs on stuff like 15W-40, 15W-50 or 20W-50 - different formulations and additive packages than automotive oils.

I spent a career as master of an oceanographic research ship, powered by four 650 hp Cummins twin turbo V-12s. They each used 23 gallons of Drydene 15W-40 diesel lube. It took us almost two 55 gallon drums to do an oil and (3 filters each engine) change every 125 hours or so. That's about the equivalent of 7500 car miles. We won't talk about the two GM 4-71 diesel gensets.
Thanks for the interesting walk in your park, my next project is to run some sort of a 200 degree F or so thermostat so get those fans to start cooling earlier. There has to be a way, I tried to install a lower temp non oem Tstat and the computer had a fit, broke the original and bought another at Autozone that’s more wrench and socket friendly.
 

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The normal 'stat is set to begin at 188 and fully open at 206. Northstars in good condition run at between 190 and 205 all day every day all year anywhere on earth, so the 'stat is never fully open, even on the highway at 75 mph. Fans don't run at over 35 mph or so - not needed.

DO NOT mess with the 'stat temps or fan controls. I guarantee that you'll be very sorry if you do.

I'll opine that your 2006 Nstar is set to begin fans to SLOW at around 215 or so, FAST at 225 or so. Earlier was 224S - 236F. If you have some A/C compressor function (including DEFROST) set then fans run in SLOW - not for cooling - but to insure airflow through the condenser in front of the radiator. 235 is barely toasty warm.

The reason your low temp 'stat caused problems is that emissions loop change is set to about 160 degrees coolant temp (depending on ambient temp) so the systems were trying to use oddball fuel mixtures to run the engine. DO NOT screw with thermostats or calibration settings for the fans. Forewarned is forearmed. You know something the design engineers didn't ?
 

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2006 XLR
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
The normal 'stat is set to begin at 188 and fully open at 206. Northstars in good condition run at between 190 and 205 all day every day all year anywhere on earth., so the 'stat is never fully open, even on the highway at 75 mph. Fans don't run at over 35 mph or so - not needed.

DO NOT mess with the 'stat temps or fan controls. I guarantee that you'll be very sorry if you do.

I'll opine that your 2006 Nstar is set to begin fans to SLOW at around 215 or so, FAST at 225 or so. Earlier was 224S - 236F. If you have some A/C compressor function (including DEFROST) set then fans run in SLOW - not for cooling - but to insure airflow through the condenser in front of the radiator. 235 is barely toasty warm.

The reason your low temp 'stat caused problems is that emissions loop change is set to about 160 degrees coolant temp (depending on ambient temp) so the systems were trying to use oddball fuel mixtures to run the engine. DO NOT screw with thermostats or calibration settings for the fans. Forewarned is forearmed. You know something the design engineers didn't ?
Your right, I’ll leave well enough alone.Thanks for the headup.
 
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